How to Find the Right Child Custody Attorney

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Child custody cases are quite common, and according to UNICEF, more than 26.6% of children under 12 lived in one-parent homes while the other parent lived in a separate location. Are you struggling to find a good child custody attorney? You’re probably not the only one. Here are some tips for finding the best child custody attorney.

References

Do you know anyone who has dealt with a child custody case before? This could be a good starting point if you’re looking for an attorney. You can also ask your friends and family or seek advice from court clerks. Depending on where you visit, some courts tend to maintain a network of child custody lawyers that you can tap into. However, when you get a list of references, it doesn’t mean you should hire the first attorney on that list. You should do further checks to ensure they’re the right one for your case.

Ask the Right Questions

You should never hire a child custody attorney before meeting them in person. If you’ve scheduled a meeting with someone, you need to ensure you have a comprehensive list of questions to ask. One of the things you need to find out is if the attorney has any experience with your type of case. You should also ask about the fee structure. Some attorneys charge on a retainer basis, while others charge per hour. Apart from that, you should also find out if the lawyer offers a free consultation, which will give you an idea of whether or not you’ll be able to work with the child custody attorney.

Check the Attorney’s Reputation

It’s very important to try and get more information concerning an attorney’s reputation before you start working with them. Fortunately, there are lots of resources you can use to check an attorney’s reputation before you start working with them. For instance, you can check your state’s attorney directory, which will let you know if the attorney you’re interested in is in good standing with your state bar. Another way to learn more about an attorney’s reputation is to ask around town, and there’s a good chance people will know a lot about an attorney’s reputation.

These are some tips you can use to find a child custody attorney. Are you having problems finding the best attorney around you? Get in touch with us today, and our team can help you with your case.

Everything You Should Know About Estate Planning

Estate planning is the process of arranging for the disposal of one’s properties after their death. When a person passes away, the management of their property is important because it can be the cause of chaos after someone passes away. Estate planning ensures that all of a person’s property is managed well and distributed among their dependents after their death. According to Advance Capital Management, 55% of Americans pass away without estate management or a will. Estate planning can take many forms, so let’s look into this subject in more detail.

Wills

A will is an essential part of estate planning. A will helps you decide who will own what property after you have passed away. A will empowers a person when they are living to decide who will inherit what property after they’ve passed on. It also gives one the power to make other important decisions, such as choosing a guardian for their children. It ensures that there is continuity after the death of a person. It also protects the rights and affairs of loved ones after one passes away. A will is an essential document in estate planning that de-escalates tensions between interested parties after one’s death. A will can only become legally binding after one dies, and it has to go through the probate process for the property to be given to the beneficiaries.

Trusts

A trust is another important estate planning tool. A trust ensures that all property is distributed to the proper beneficiaries after one’s death. One creates a trust and transfers ownership of their property to it. The trustee then distributes the property to the listed beneficiaries as indicated. Unlike a will, a trust does not need to go through the probate process. In a trust, there can be a pour-over where the property that you didn’t indicate is handed over to the trust. One can have both a will and a trust.

The Power of Attorney

Estate planning is not complete without the power of attorney. Power of attorney gives authority to an individual to manage the property in case one becomes incapacitated. This happens in trusts. When one can no longer act on their property as willed, then the power of attorney can give a trustee the power to act on one’s behalf.

Are you interested in putting together a will? Do you need help choosing a power of attorney? Contact Woodworth & Holter, PLLP today for all of your estate planning needs.

Everything Custody Attorneys Wish You Knew About Custody Cases

When you’re looking for a good child custody attorney, it’s important to do your due diligence. This process involves seeking references, checking the state bar association, and seeking information from other reputable resources to narrow down your options for custody attorneys. It’s also a good idea to learn more about child custody proceedings, so check out these top things that custody attorneys wish you knew about custody cases.

Avoid Things That Sabotage Your Case

If you’re in the middle of a child custody battle, you should be interested in doing things that advance instead of harming your case. Keep in mind that your behavior will be under evaluation throughout the proceedings, so you should watch out for anything that could set you back.

Besides watching your behavior, you should also be careful in your conversations because you never know when your spouse or someone else could be recording you. Imagine saying something out of anger or frustration only to have it used against you. You should also avoid yelling or confrontations with your spouse or children as well as any other behavior that might be damaging to your case.

Hiring a Lawyer Is Essential

It’s normal to wonder if it’s necessary to hire a child custody attorney. If you want a speedy resolution to your case and less stressful child custody proceedings, then the answer is yes. Child custody attorneys also help you avoid costly mistakes and help ensure a better outcome for your case. The trick is to find a reputable attorney with a good track record.

Factors That Determine Custody

If you’re going before a judge, it’s also a good idea to understand the factors the judge considers when resolving custody issues. In most instances, the judge considers various factors, such as the age and mental state of the child. They’ll also look at the relationship between the child and each of the parents, whether each parent provides a stable environment, and the ability of the parent to care for the child. Knowing these factors will help you manage your expectations and help you determine what you need to do to ensure the best outcome.

Child custody proceedings can trigger strong emotions. The best thing you can do is to arm yourself with the right knowledge and hire a reputable child custody attorney. Contact us today if you need an experienced attorney to be on your side during your child custody proceedings.

Why Are Divorce Rates Increasing Today?

Nowadays, a lot of marriages tend to end in divorce. According to National Affairs, the current divorce rate is nearly double that of 1960. However, it’s not as much as the all-time high of 22.6 in the early 1980s. Here are some of the reasons causing an increase in divorce rates.

Change in Divorce Stigma

Nowadays, women and men are both more educated and empowered. In the past, most women were dependent on men for finances, which is not the case today. Because of this and the reduced stigma, women have more freedom to walk away from marriages they consider less than ideal. They are also able to quickly engage a divorce lawyer. Over the past few decades, the overall attitude toward divorce has become more relaxed. This makes it easier for partners to walk away from each other, especially those with peers who are doing the same.

Longer Life Expectancies

There are several things that are causing life expectancy to increase. While this is a good thing, it’s also upping the stakes for partners who are unhappy in their unions. People are living longer because of better medical treatments and health care awareness. This means that the years people generally expect to spend in a marriage have increased. For instance, a woman who is 55 years old will likely spend 30 years more in her marriage. This will prompt partners to question whether they can stay in an unhappy situation for that long. If not, the next step would be to start looking for a divorce lawyer.

Premarital Cohabitation

More young people are living together before marriage nowadays. Research shows that couples who do this appear to have a higher chance of divorce if they end up getting married. This is especially true for people who have cohabited with several partners. Most people believe that living together enables them to know each better in preparation for marriage. On the contrary, that has been shown to increase the leniency towards divorce. However, not every expert thinks the same. Some also believe that couples who get engaged and then start staying together before marriage are less likely to divorce.

These are some of the factors that increase the risk of couples engaging a divorce lawyer. Apart from the factors listed above, another factor that increases the risk of divorce is experiencing the divorce of your parents. This has been shown to double your risk for divorce. If both partners come from broken homes, then that risk triples. However, this doesn’t mean that children from divorced homes will definitely end up in divorce. It only means they need to be more aware of their marriage trends and work harder to ensure their marriages don’t end in divorce.

Why Is It Important to Have a Will?

A will is a document that allows you to speak after you are dead, and one that gives instructions on how you would like your assets to be managed in your absence. It provides instructions such as how your properties will be distributed and who will take care of your underage children, i.e. those under 21 years. However, a study by Merril Lynch and Age found that 55% of all Americans are those who die without a will or estate plan.

When you die without a will in place, you leave the management of your assets in the hands of the courts who will apply the law in the distribution process. Your loved ones may stand to lose out on what you intended to be theirs because there is no guidance in the form of a will to state this. This is therefore a very important document to have in place and we look at a few reasons why.

Instruction for Your Burial Preferences

A will instructs your loved ones on how you would like to be buried. We all have a way in which we would like our bodies to be handled after we die. However, if this is not shared with our loved ones, it can cause conflict and confusion among those left behind. A will easily clarifies what the last wishes of the deceased were in that matter.

Who Inherits Your Wealth

This is a critical aspect of why a will is needed. It especially protects young children to ensure that your hard-earned wealth does not fall into the wrong hands to deny them what is rightfully theirs and that they are well provided for in your absence.

Determine Your Executor

A will allows you to select the person that you would like to be the executor of your wealth. This is especially so where there are properties and financial assets. You can select the person you trust to run your affairs and ensure that your wishes are carried out.

A will is not a nice document to have or a suggestion, but a critical part of your estate and future planning, especially when ensuring that your children and loved ones are protected even when you are gone. It reduces the level of disputes and conflicts as the instructions are clearly spelled out for everyone to understand and follow.